The Contents of a Cup

Sunday morning, I was drinking my coffee and reading before church, and I came across a verse in John 18 that I have not been able to get away from.

The context of this verse is in the Garden of Gethsemane. The soldiers have arrived to arrest Jesus and dear, sweet, instinctive, relatable Peter has just pulled out his sword to defend Jesus and has cut off the high priest’s servant’s ear.

Jesus’ response is this: “Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?” ~John 18:11
The last part of that verse is what really caught and has kept my attention.

How often do I look into my cup and complain?
My cup holds burdens for family members and friends, concern for the souls of the people I see everyday, worry for my husband’s physical problems, my own physical issues, our infertility, etc.
Sometimes I look into my cup and it seems so dark and difficult to swallow….

Then I look into Jesus’ cup.
There I see all the darkness and dregs of my sin. All the wickedness our sinful flesh could muster was poured into the cup of God’s wrath and judgment and was handed to the spotless, pure, holy Lamb of God for Him to drink.
He who knew no sin was about to become sin…for me.
He knew what waited for Him, what was about to take place. He was hours away from Calvary, and instead of complaining, His gentle, calming voice said to Peter, “The cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?”

Who am I to ever despise the contents of my cup? Whatever sorrows it may hold are NOTHING compared to the sorrows found in Christ’s cup.
He endured all the suffering and torment that should have been mine.

I’m reminded of a verse of an old hymn:
“Death and the curse were in our cup:
O Christ, ’twas full for Thee;
But Thou hast drained the last dark drop,
’Tis empty now for me.
That bitter cup, love drank it up;
Now blessing’s draught for me.”

May God help us all to remember that whatever we may face, no matter how seemingly impossible, pales in comparison to the horrors of the cup of Calvary.
The things we as Christians face are only meant to cause us to depend on Christ and become more like Him.

May God help me never to despise my cup. He filled it with exactly what I need.
“The cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?”

*If you’re reading this and don’t know Jesus, your cup still holds all the wickedness and vileness of your sin…but you don’t have to drink it! Jesus took it in your place! Continue reading in John and see exactly what Christ endured to redeem sinners. He paid a high price for you because He loves and wanted YOU! Run to Him! The blood of Jesus is sufficient for every stain of sin. He can take away the filthy rags of your own righteousness and wash you whiter than snow!
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” ~John 3:16

O Christ, what burdens bowed Thy head!
Our load was laid on Thee;
Thou stoodest in the sinner’s stead,
Didst bear all ill for me.
A Victim led, Thy blood was shed;
Now there’s no load for me.

Death and the curse were in our cup:
O Christ, ’twas full for Thee;
But Thou hast drained the last dark drop,
’Tis empty now for me.
That bitter cup, love drank it up;
Now blessing’s draught for me.

Jehovah lifted up His rod;
O Christ, it fell on Thee!
Thou wast sore stricken of Thy God;
There’s not one stroke for me.
Thy tears, Thy blood, beneath it flowed;
Thy bruising healeth me.

The tempest’s awful voice was heard,
O Christ, it broke on Thee!
Thy open bosom was my ward,
It braved the storm for me.
Thy form was scarred, Thy visage marred;
Now cloudless peace for me.

Jehovah bade His sword awake;
O Christ, it woke ’gainst Thee!
Thy blood the flaming blade must slake;
Thine heart its sheath must be;
All for my sake, my peace to make;
Now sleeps that sword for me.

For me, Lord Jesus, Thou hast died,
And I have died in Thee!
Thou’rt ris’n—my hands are all untied,
And now Thou liv’st in me.
When purified, made white and tried,
Thy glory then for me!

~O Christ, What Burdens Bowed Thy Head by Anne Cousin

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